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JESUS IS COMING—REALLY
Your skepticism is understandable, given recent history. (10/21a)
STRUNG OUT
ON STRINGS
KG is happy for a change. (10/21a)
U.K. MIDWEEKS: A BATTLE FOR #1
Sometimes our two countries seem quite distinct from each other taste-wise. (10/21a)
JESUS IS COMING—REALLY
But shouldn't "is" have an initial cap? (10/21a)
TOP 50 CHART: THIS THING IS BROKE
Never...again (10/21a)
RIHANNA PREPARES TO RULE THE ROOST
What shoes go with dancehall?
WHAT'S NEXT FOR R&B?
How certain projects connect at streaming.
THE K-POP LANDSCAPE
농담은 한국어에서 더 잘 작동합니다.
THE NEW GRAMMY POWER
Change is nigh.
Music City
NEXT-WAVE MANAGERS: LISA RAY (SANDBOX ENTERTAINMENT)
7/8/19

For Sandbox Entertainment’s Lisa Ray, who got her start at 16 by hectoring the manager of a North Carolina Record Bar to work there, her “break” came when WEA Distribution’s John Esposito spotted the music-hungry Appalachian State grad and offered her a job as a pop and urban field-marketing rep. When Espo went country, he annexed Ray and put her to work on Chris Janson, Devin Dawson, Ashley McBryde and a pop-leaning duo managed by Jason Owen named Dan + Shay, pictured above with Ray.

After five years at Warner Nashville, Ray moved over to management “in one of the easiest transitions in the world, because I was still working with two of the best people ever, Jason and Espo, on an act I believed in from day one.” Over the last 18 months, D+S have had a global pop smash with “Tequila,” stunned with a Grammy performance, won Best Country Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group and are now seeing crossover success as “Speechless” lands Top 25 Pop and Top 10 Hot AC, while “All to Myself” hits the Country Top 15.

With all the disruption, what’s the biggest hurdle?

Some may say it’s a hurdle, but I think being able to put out the best songs and know they could have an unexpected life because of the blurred lines is awesome. Some people see that as a disruption, but I see it as a reality and an opportunity. People used to look at crossover as a bad thing, but the streaming world has reminded us that stated genre-defining limitations really don’t apply.

Fans want to consume more and consume more often. Genres overlap, and being nimble allows the artist to offer music in many different forms—maybe a remix or an alternate version. Fans eat that up, so we should be providing as much as we can to any consumer who wants to listen.